Let’s take a walk down memory lane and revisit Selling Skills 101. What’s the first thing salespeople are taught? SMILE AT THE CUSTOMER. There’s a good reason for that: people are hardwired to respond positively to people who are smiling. It’s pleasant to be smiled at, and nearly 9 times out of 10, shoppers will stay in a store longer when the staff is smiling. They’ll also buy more merchandise and return to that same store more often.
It’s not only your staff’s mood that influence customers’ behavior. The attitude exhibited by your other customers can influence the decision to stay in the store or move on; to buy something or leave it on the shelf, and more.
Think about it: given a choice of two places to eat lunch, both fairly similar to each other, but with one full of happy, smiling people and the other full of visibly irritated diners, where would you prefer to eat?
No Smiles on Social Media?
Smiles are a readily accessible, no cost way to attract customer attention, convince them that you’re the type of establishment they want to do business with, and clearly invite further action. So why don’t we see more smiling faces on social media?
Even a perfunctory analysis of most small business’ social media presence reveals a landscape practically devoid of smiles. There are plenty of product shots, and tons of clever graphics and memes, and links to informative articles – but when it comes to good old-fashioned pictures of smiling staff or customers, no dice!
Want more sales? Start smiling.
When we don’t put the emotional appeal of our businesses at the heart of our social media marketing, we’re missing a valuable opportunity. One of the reasons social media has become so prevalent in our society is that it serves as a vehicle to establish relationships. It’s much easier for your customers and potential customers to develop that relationship with you if they can see who you are. Additionally, seeing people like themselves having a good time in your store or with your products will reinforce the idea that they should come in and check out your business for themselves.
Luckily, this problem is easily remedied. Capture some images of your team smiling – and no, they don’t have to be 100% spontaneous, there’s no law that says you can’t say “Hey! Smile!” – as they go about their day. Ask customers if you can take their picture –particularly if they’re happy with a new purchase or have come in with a group of friends and are having a great time!
Add these images to your social media deck. Ideally, you’ll have a smile or more a day to share with your customers. Additionally, look for ways to use the best images on your website. Strategically integrating smiles into your digital marketing will help you stand out as the appealing, friendly alternative in a crowded marketplace.